China to buy 30 Boeing aircraft in $1.6 billion deal

Tuesday, October 2nd 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

WASHINGTON (AP) _ China has ordered 30 Boeing 737 jetliners worth approximately $1.6 billion, Boeing Co. officials said Tuesday.

Boeing and Chinese officials signed the deal at a ceremony with Commerce Secretary Don Evans.

The order comes at a time when the domestic airline industry is faltering due to fallout from the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. Boeing announced two weeks ago that it will lay off up to 30,000 workers in its commercial aircraft sector because of lost business.

Boeing said China Southern Airlines is buying 20 737-800s, China Eastern Airlines is buying four 737-700s, Hainan Airlines is buying three 737-800s and Shanghai Airlines is buying two 737-800s and one 737-700.

The single-aisle jets, to be delivered between 2002 and 2005, will replace older jets on domestic routes.

Boeing made its first sale to China in 1972 when the country ordered 10 707s after President Nixon's visit. Chinese airlines currently operate 357 Boeing jetliners.

Boeing forecasts China will need 1,764 commercial jets worth $144 billion over the next 20 years, becoming its largest market outside the United States.